|Chad here, E-I-C over at Studio 407. I'd like to take a few minutes
to talk about one of our upcoming books, The Night Projectionist. One
of the most interesting challenges of this book has been how to tell
a vampire story that hasn't been done a million-zillion times
already. From Dracula to Buffy to that episode of Buffy with Dracula
in it, vampires have been a part of our collective pop-consciousness
for our entire lives whether we like it or not. And as storytellers,
there's a lot of baggage and preconceptions that come along with
vampire stories (whether we like it or not).
So, when Bob Heske, typer of words and constructor of sentences, came
to us with his pitch for The Night Projectionist, we knew we had a
great story on our hands. Bob knew, like all great writers know,
that it's character first. And among an ensemble cast that's almost a
microcosm of small-town America, TNP has a great central character.
His name is Dragos and he's a badass. And when it came time to find
an artist that would capture aforementioned badassery on the page, we
turned to Mr. Diego Yapur.
Deigo has a fantastic style, heavy on the blacks, which gives the
artwork a lot of weight. His work has got a real sense of mood --
sort of a modern interpretation of 70s horror comics. And it was a
great fit for Bob's story of a bad man in a bad situation.
So we gave Diego the script and watched as pages rolled in. And like
all great stories, it begins in 18th Century Romania.
One of the only problems that I had with Diego was we had started off
using a non-US format. And rather than have him redo everything we
did some quick adjustments in photoshop to make them fix the standard
comic size a bit better.
It was also a bit difficult to find a colorist that would compliment
Diego's work. And we found a great colorist in Jorge Blanco. He did a
great job in helping to bring this story of the undead to life.
We asked a lot of Diego through out this book. Lots of different
locations, costumes and characters. The story starts out in a small
village in Eastern Europe, where a mysterious plague decimates the
population. And he did a great job in setting up the ... wait... is
that an octopus?
Now, here's where working with a South American artist like Diego
gets fun. The script calls for "tentacles to cocoon it's victims in
thin tendrils of flesh..." And something got a bit lost in
translation. Easy fix, but it's one of those great moments as an
editor that you'll always, always remember.
And in color.
In the next page, as the priest addresses his congrgation, I felt
that we weren't really getting a sense of the church or the crowd
(every artist's favorite). So we asked Diego to take another crack at
You might also notice some subtle changes like in panel 4, showing
more or characters' faces.
Notice the extra work that Diego did between the pencils and the inks
to help to add more to the setting.
And in the final panel, we adjusted the final file and hunched the
character over a bit to give him a more defeated stance.
Okay the biggest change we made was making Dragos' hat less... well,
he looked too "Eastwood" rocking the brimmed hat, so we went in
another direction. Period clothing is always fun.
And in the colors, we flipped the final panel to make sure that the
readers we're confusing the child with the side-kick, though colored
differently, the cut of their clothing was similar.
[Colors for page 5]
So, that's a look behind the curtain of the Night Projectionist. This
has been a fun project to work on and I can't wait for you to see it.
I look forward to hearing what you guys think about it. The first
issue hits shelves this March. Enjoy.
Thanks for reading,
Studio 407, Editor-In-Chief
Find out more about this comic at Studio 407.
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